All posts by Christine Kinnie

Robson Valley Sheep Company

Hani Gasser produces organic, grass-fed beef and lamb on his farm near McBride, B.C.

From the website:

In  the beautiful Robson Valley, located near McBride, B.C., Robson Valley Sheep Company has been raising organic grass fed lamb, a small herd of organic beef and providing sheep for breeding stock. Herding and livestock guardian dogs have been an essential part of our farm management for the past 20 years. We were formerly located in Chase, B.C. where we raised dairy sheep and produced milk products which included different varieties of cheese and yogurt.

As a certified organic farm we do not use chemical fertilizers or pesticides on our fields and any treatment required for our livestock is accepted by the organic certification body. Animal welfare is of the utmost importance to us and this is why our lamb is known as “beyond certified organic”. We believe that sheep and cows are born to live on pasture and hay – not grain and have a right to a life outdoors.

Haying and pasture rotation on all fields possible and multiple species grazing (sheep, cattle, horses) help to manage weeds, keep parasites down, better utilize pasture and improve winter feed.

As a provider of organic, commercial sheep, our ewes and ewe lambs are the perfect mothers to use a meaty terminal sire on. We have crossed the original Rambouillet Est de Laine mothers we purchased with East Frisians & Lacaune. We are looking for the hardiness of the Rambouillet plus the milk, multiple lambing and easy to handle trait of the diary sheep. If our sheep are not capable of raising twins on pasture and hay they are culled from the flock. Because our flock is closed and certified organic our sheep will respond very well to any commercial treatments.

Products:

Certified Organic Beef, Lamb

Availability:

Direct Sale; Delivery to Prince George, Edmonton, Kamloops

Contact:

(250)-569-0333

www.sheephappens.ca

WoodGrain Farm

 

WoodGrain Farm is a certified organic farm located in the Kispiox Valley. The farm is a mix of forest, pasture, wetland, and gardens. We grow an assortment of vegetables, herbs, melons, flowers, and small grains. We do not use herbicides, pesticides, or synthetic fertilizers; our animals provide much of the farm’s fertility. Our vegetables are mainly heirloom varieties, grown for their flavor, nutrition, beauty, and to preserve genetic diversity. Our heritage grains are grown here at the farm and milled on our stone mill. We currently have Red Fife whole wheat and rye flour available.

Products:

Arugula, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Cucumber, Eggplant, Flowers, Flour, Garlic, Herbs, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Mustard Greens, Onions, Pac Choi, Parnsips, Peas, Peppers, Potatoes, Radishes, Rhubarb, Rutabaga, Spinach, Squash, Tomatoes, Turnips, Zucchini, Whole Grains

Available At:

Farm Gate (please phone first), Hazelton Farmers’ Market, Smithers Farmers’ Market

Contact:

farm@woodgrain.ca

www.woodgrain.ca

(250) 842-0088

 

Balsam Ranch

Deb & Mac Cochrane offer in-season herbs and vegetables and year-round potatoes, beef and chicken, based out of Valemount, BC. Deb and Mac’s cold storage and greenhouse facilities extend the seasonal availability of their produce.

Products:

Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Celery, Cucumber, Herbs, Kale, Lettuce, Potatoes, Swiss Chard, Zucchini, Beef, Chicken

Available At:

Farm Gate

Contact:

mac52@valemount.com

(250)-968-4498

May Profile: Ryser Farms


There are two important tools required to pass agricultural heritage and diversity from one generation to the next: seeds and knowledge. Long-time Prince George farmer John Ryser possesses both in vast quantities and is eager to share.

John began farming in the 1930’s, and from a young age, he excelled at his trade. For thirteen years in a row, John won the potato section of the BC Provincial Seed Fair, and though the competition no longer exists, his potatoes are still infamous among his farming colleagues.

John has seen over seven decades of agriculture in the north, and it’s clear that the state of farms and food today is in need of big changes. As a seed grower, John continues to supply Art Knapps and other garden merchants with quality seed potato, but grocery stores no longer purchase from him in favour of larger centralized warehouses in Alberta and the Lower Mainland. John currently cultivates only a fraction of the land and varieties he once did. Many good northern varieties of potato have been lost because there are simply no more farmers growing them.

But these challenges have not put a damper on John’s passion for growing. He continues to cultivate more than eleven varieties of potatoes and sell them at the Prince George Farmers Market. He says he’ll rust if he ever stops. John is optimistic that the Beyond the Market program will spark consumer change in north; he hopes to up his production in 2011, just in case.